We are thrilled to welcome Dr Marijke Struijk as a Postdoctoral Fellow to the EcoDiv Lab! She is continuing our work on soil food web structure and functioning in kauri (Agathis australis) dominated forests. Marijke has taken over Rebecca Le Grice’s position (who has gone on to work as a Natural History Curator at the Canterbury Museum), where she will be investigating how kauri dieback disease (caused by Phytophthora agathidicida) alters belowground biodiversity and ecosystem functioning.
Before coming to New Zealand, Marijke completed a PhD at University of Reading in the UK, where she conducted research on soil residues in cropping systems and their influence on soil biota. From her studies, she developed expertise in understanding the linkages between soil biogeochemistry and soil biota. We are now very lucky to have Marijke applying her expertise to investigate changes in the spatial and energetic structure of kauri soil food webs and the consequences for multiple belowground functions such as decomposition, predation, and herbivory.